Flu deaths rise to 67 across NC

The number of flu deaths continues to rise in North Carolina, with 21 new deaths reported just last week.

The deaths were reported between Jan. 14 and Jan. 20, according to data released Thursday by the North Carolina Division of Public Health. That brings the total number of flu deaths this flu season to 67. 

The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Some people — such as older people, young children and people with certain health conditions — are at high risk for serious flu complications. The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated each year. 

RELATED: 6-year-old NC girl dies just days after flu diagnosis

Flu symptoms include:

  • A 100 degree or higher fever or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever)
  • A cough and/or sore throat
  • A runny or stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea (most common in children)